The Reason

The base calibre was  initially designed in the 1940s by Albert Piguet at the Lémania workshops. The Breguet 5287 chronograph has taken this classical calibre, maintained the overall original design, personalised it and enhanced precision with a free-sprung Breguet overcoil and Breguet balance with screw adjustment stud holder.

(Launched in 2013)


 Functions: central minute, hour and chronograph seconds hand, constant seconds at 9 o’clock and minute recorder at 3 o’clock, tachometric scale surrounding the chapter ring.

Winding manual Power reserve 48 hours Calibre 533.3 Jewels 24 Frequency 3Hz Escapement Swiss straight-line lever Balance-spring Breguet overcoil, freesprung Case Metal 18 carat red gold Sapphire caseback & bezel Case diameter 42.5mm Case thickness 12,1mm Water-resistant 30m


Each Breguet ‘Classique’ watch has a unique serial number which is found both on the dial and case back, then recorded in the company archives.


Fluted case side, synonymous with the majority of Breguet case designs. Originally found in early pocket watches as a mean to enhance ‘grip’ whilst the watch was being carried and viewed.


The case back is a compression ‘pushed’ fit on to the center of the case. The engraving around the sapphire follows the guilloché style.


The dial is made in 18 carat gold, the guilloché decoration executed on rose cutting engines operated by hand. The dial below was photographed before the serial number was added. The serial numbers are printed after the dials are made and once the dial is associated with the case, that is already engraved.

Historically Breguet has used a secret signature on the dial as a means to protect the authenticity of each watch. In early examples there was a single signature engraved to one side of the number 12. With modern Breguets’, for equilibrium and added security the Breguet signature is engraved either side of the ‘12’.

The dials are machined, including the dial feet, from a single disc of 18 carat gold. Three dial feet assure extra rigidity on the rose cutting engines when the dials are being cut, as well as security when sitting on the movement and movement ring. They are heavier than many conventional dials because of the density of the material and the large volume of the gold used.

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The style of the hands have become known as Breguet, and have been used by many other manufactures since their original incarnation. These shown, are made in hardened and tempered steel, polished then thermically blued. The centre chronograph seconds hand is made from a non-magnetic alloy then lacquered red.

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Movement calibre 533.3 manually wound by the user and the movement has a power reserve that for 48 hours when the barrel is fully wound. There are 24 synthetic rubies set into the calibre. The balance vibrates at a frequency of 3Hz, 21,600 vibrations per hour. The escapement is a Swiss-lever. The balance-spring has a Breguet over-coil, and is free-sprung (no index to adjust the effective length of the balance spring).


The balance assembly and escapement removed.


The balance assembly and escapement, below. The swans-neck regulation system adjusts the beat error apposed to the regulation. The balance is regulated through the timing screws on the balance.


A partially exploded view of the upper section of the chronograph.


The principal operating lever which rotates the pillar wheel turning the chronograph on and off. Activated by the upper pusher.

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The hammers are under tension, being pushed into the centre by a spring. They are hooked by the vertical post shown below, when the lower pusher is pressed it moves the post allowing the hammers to reset the chronograph.

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The hammers, which simultaneously reset to zero the chronograph hands by pushing the heart shaped cams on the chronograph wheels.

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The steel brake which pushes onto the chronograph wheel in ‘stop’ position preventing it from wandering.

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An exploded view of the lower section of the chronograph.


The double ended spring both pushes the coupling clutch which meshes the chronograph wheel with the going train and pushes on the hook which sits at the end of the operating lever, ensuring the operating lever is reset every time it is activated by the 2 o’clock pusher.

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The minute recorder is driven by a small beak under the chronograph seconds wheel, tripping the intermediate wheel shown below and in-turn the minute recorder wheel.

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The minute recorder wheel is indexed by a fine spring pawl which sits above it (here shown below the ‘Swiss’). The thickness of the spring is extremely fine to allow the chronograph wheel beak to turn the wheel being indexed with out effecting the amplitude of the watch.

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The coupling clutch transmits the power from the going train to the chronograph seconds wheel. It is driven by the ‘upper fourth wheel’, which sits on an extended pivot of the forth wheel which in turn drives the escape wheel.

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The chronograph continuing to be dismantled, below are the chronograph wheels and their bridge.


The chronograph pillar or column wheel, which is in essence the brain of the chronograph mechanism controlling the movement of the hammers, clutch systems and levers.


The train bridge removed showing the barrel assembly and going train. All of the wheels follow the French Breguet design of arms and the barrel is skeletonized with the same form.


The train bridge which also acts as the support for the chronograph mechanism.


Instead of the conventional round hole into which the centre wheel is riveted, here it has two flats machined into the wheel and pinion, before riveting acting as an additional security.


The barrel assembly and the ratchet wheel are skeletonized following the same design as all of the other wheels in the calibre. They are only seen when the watch is dismantled.


The rear (under dial view) of the movement, finished with a ‘pearlage’ decoration' before being rhodium plated.


The setting mechanism. The pivot for the minute recorder hand can be seen protruding through the cover plate.


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Summary

The Breguet ‘Classique’ Chronograph 5287 links their design code to a vintage calibre which has undergone an upgrade to fall in line with their technological advances of today, whilst retaining the calibres original strength and 1940’s proportions and basic theory.

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Images of the case.


Images of the assembled watch.


Before assembly the hands are received in small envelopes each holding a hand in its own paper sheath.


Before assembly of the watch for the first time, the dials are stocked and transported in plastic containers themselves mechanical pushing the dial via a central hole with 3 springs, suspending it to avoid any contact.


Specialised watchmakers tools used in the assembly.

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To learn more about Breguet www.breguet.com